Road safety week, sustainable or not?

It is UK Road Safety Week, 17-23 November. Newcycling.org, Newcastle’s cycling campaign, reacts to that tradition by calling for urgent change in thinking and doing. Katja Leyendecker, chair of newcycling.org, says “UK Road Safety Week is not welcome in its current format. It’s degrading and counterproductive in many ways. It is tackling a serious problem from a wrong angle and can be very hurtful to victims of traffic and road danger. Hiviz, ‘been seen’ and ‘looking out for each other’ have been messages we’ve heard for years, yet motor dominance has increased. If left untackled, it makes those patronising messages[…]

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Council cuts and desperate times? City must wake up to alternatives

Cycle advocates say it’s exactly because of council cuts that business-as-usual is no longer an option and that alternatives transport systems must be explored for a fairer, affordable future, better sooner than later. Katja Leyendecker, chair of newcycling.org, says “In our complex world it can be hard to see the wood for trees sometimes. And this seems to be where Newcastle City Council presently finds itself, in a deep dark forest. Whether recent council cuts are necessary or not, they are happening and we have to adjust – for the sake of our city and its future. We find ourselves[…]

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Newcastle City Council continues to remove cycle infrastructure

After removing cycle specific infrastructure on Silver Lonnen in 2010 and Elswick Road in 2012, Newcastle council continues to dismantle existing cycle lanes, now at a school in Heaton. Katja Leyendecker, chair of newcycling.org, says: “This is almost unbearable to watch how the council is still unable to support sustainable travel options to schools. For example, we are asking them to design in some safe space for cycling for the school run on Tankerville Terrace in Jesmond and they push us back again and again with their excuses. Now they are wiping out an existing cycle lane on Jesmond Park[…]

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Acorn Road consultation report

Re: Jesmond’s Acorn Road consultation report, Newcastle City Council – Newcycling, Newcastle’s cycling campaign’s view: Katja Leyendecker, chair of newcycling.org, says: “We welcome the public’s and project board’s decision to reduce motor dominance on Acorn Road. It’s good for people, business, residents and customers, young and old. I am delighted to see that people rallied behind the far better option of the two that were on offer. Generally though, in the future, Acorn Road should be fully pedestrianised and that could have been an ‘option for change’ in the consultation, whereas option 2 should not have been included. There is[…]

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Civic Cycle Ride for Space for Cycling

Newcycling lays on another Big Ride in the toon, this time stretching all the way to Gateshead. On 27 September Newcastle and Gateshead will turn red with Space for Cycling banners and bike plates celebrating the campaign’s local success. This time, the big city chiefs Cllr Forbes and Cllr Henry plan to join the ride, alongside the Campaign’s patron Christian Wolmar and, of course, hundreds of city cyclists. Newcastle rides high on a tremendous success story. Over 60% of Newcastle Councillors support Space for Cycling and want to create conditions where everyone can cycle safely, everywhere without fear of traffic[…]

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Pesky subject of pavement pedalling

City cycling advocates, Newcycling, are keen to find solutions to pavement cycling – one of the most grating subjects for improving cycling conditions: the misunderstanding over what cycle advocacy groups are campaigning for and how this can ultimately help other vulnerable road user groups. Pavement cycling is one of the most distracting discussions when ‘cycling at large’ is debated. Newcycling is co-organiser of the Cycling & Society Symposium (C&S), held in Newcastle, 14-16 September. One researcher, Hannah Delaney from Bristol, promises to give “An insight into cyclist and pedestrian interactions on shared use paths”. This is one reason why to[…]

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Thinking cycling – Cycling & Society Symposium to be held in Newcastle

Joint organisers Northumbria University, Newcastle City Council and Newcycling are welcoming leading cycling researchers from around the globe to Newcastle for the Cycling & Society Symposium, 14-16 September. The event starts with a cycling infrastructure safari hosted by Newcycling on Sunday to demonstrate Newcastle’s ‘starter city’ status, a day of talks presented by world-class researchers in the field of cycling on Monday – welcomed to Newcastle by Cllr Marion Talbot – and wraps up on Tuesday with organisational proceedings of the C&S group. Monday attendance is open to the public for a £5 fee, including lunch. Cllr Marion Talbot, Chair[…]

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Councillors in deprived Newcastle ward depress cycling future

Cycling advocates are left wondering what’s going on in Newcastle’s East end. Councillors there are leaving a gaping hole in the otherwise overwhelming support for Space for Cycling. Newcycling joined the nation-wide Space for Cycling campaign last year and since then has worked diligently through members’ action and using social media to gain political support for the cause. Their success is outstanding. Forty-seven out of Newcastle’s 78 Councillors have said yes to Space for Cycling, putting Newcastle in the lead countrywide. Katja, chair of Newcycling, says “It is fantastic, and hopeful for a fair transport future in Newcastle, to note[…]

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Nantes has real cycle ambitions

Another Newcycling member goes abroad to see and experience how it’s done. Armelle Tardiveau, Newcycling member says “I was so upset with the council’s Brandling Park proposal in July that I spent my August holidays photographing a great variety of safe cycling spaces in order to inspire engineers up here. “The conclusion is this: No. 1 – safe cycling means spaces along or shared with pedestrians and protected from cars and drivers. No. 2 – cycling with young children is possible in bigger cities – so why not ours? – and No. 3 – safe cycling does not always mean[…]

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Campaign quits Newcastle Cycling Forum

Newcycling, Newcastle’s cycling campaign, resigns from Newcastle City Council’s cycling forum. This comes after the group attended numerous fruitless meetings with bad governance of the forum overall. Katja, chair of Newcycling, says “Cycling deserves much better. We’ve tried to work with the council through the forum, but in its current form its not possible; it’s too frustrating banging your head against a brick wall all the time. “Involved and active citizenship deserves much better. We knew we had to cut our ties, after we assessed the achievements of the meetings compared to the time we spent on preparing for the[…]

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